Newcastle United Claim Getting To Wembley Is A Suicide Note – But What Is The Truth?
The latest Fans Forum arguably reached an all time low in terms of the Newcastle United’s ludicrous claims and reasoning for their actions (which takes some doing), this time the club/Ashley basically claiming that getting to Wembley was the equivalent of tossing a coin (or worse) in terms of relegation from the Premier League.
It is laughable that they went to the trouble of putting together some very dodgy ‘research’ statistics in advance of the Fans Forum meeting, which they could point to as why it would be daft for any club to try and win a cup, if they aren’t one of the ‘traditional’ big six (Man U, Man City, Spurs, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool) as they put it.
The club statement;
“The board outlined research into Premier League clubs in relation to domestic cup competition in the last five years, with Swansea the only club outside the traditional six to win a domestic cup and not be relegated in the same season (Wigan and Birmingham both relegated).”
What about though if you made it a proper study? You know, looked at a period of decent length, not just a small snapshot that conveniently fits your twisted agenda, based in ignorance and stupidity?
If you take it back to the year 2000, you will find that seven ‘non’traditional top 6’ clubs won either the FA or League Cup, remarkably you’ll find that it is still only the two very recent examples, Wigan and Birmingham, who got relegated. With in fact the other five not only surviving, but indeed having pretty good seasons (nobody finishing lower than 11th) compared to what fans would generally perceive for those clubs.
League Cup 2000 Leicester (8th)
League Cup 2002 Blackburn (10th)
League Cup 2004 Middlesbrough (11th)
FA Cup 2008 Portsmouth (8th)
League Cup 2011 Birmingham (18th – Relegated)
League Cup 2013 Swansea (9th)
FA Cup 2013 Wigan (18th – Relegated)
It gets even more interesting when you then factor in the eleven clubs that were losing finalists (Hull playing Saturday so not lost yet…) in that same period, only one of the ‘smaller’ clubs, the disgracefully owned & (mis-)managed Portsmouth, getting relegated in the same season they got to a final. The losing finalist statistics surely need to be included as surely Mike Ashley’s argument is that it is the resources you expend in the cup run, rather than if you win it, because the losing finalists play just as many minutes on the pitch etc in their cup run.
The other ten clubs who made the final all surviving and once again, generally having better than average seasons compared to that club’s expectations – Villa 6th (twice), Bolton 8th, Wigan 10th, Everton 5th etc
FA Cup 2000 Villa (6th)
FA Cup 2002 Southampton (11th)
League Cup 2004 Bolton (8th)
FA Cup 2006 West Ham (9th)
League Cup 2006 Wigan (10th)
FA Cup 2009 Everton (5th)
FA Cup 2010 Portsmouth (20th – Relegated))
League Cup 2010 Villa (6th)
FA Cup 2011 Stoke (13th)
League Cup 2014 Sunderland (14th)
FA Cup 2014 Hull (16th)
In fact maybe they should have consulted Alan Pardew (that would make a change) and ask how on earth West Ham managed 9th in the same season they threw away the FA Cup final to a Liverpool smash and grab.
The whole thing is laughable and sums up not just the malicious and devious way Mike Ashley runs the club but also the sheer incompetence that exists, not being able to see the wood for the trees. Or in other words, clubs that do well in the cups tend to have decent seasons because there is little doubt that winning matches (in whichever competition) breeds confidence and get you into good habits.
Just look at the incredible statistics under Sir Bobby when we were in the Champions League, winning match after match in the Premier League on the weekends following midweek European games.
So in summing up, out of the last 18 ‘small’ clubs to get to an FA or League Cup final, only 3 have been relegated – say no more.
I only wish the club would put as much effort into finding out statistics/research that might help us win something, rather than justification as to why we shouldn’t even try!
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